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Just Do It
Jun 15th, 2009, 01:55 PM
When I started using internet back in 2002 every website was in English. Lately Spanish language is everywhere and I find it hard to use internet and communicate with people on certain blogs and sites. I am thinking of learning Spanish now, at least some useful words and phrases.

English language : Total speakers First language : 309–400 million
Spanish language : Total speakers First language : 350 million

Will learning Spanish be a must in the future ?

Bayo
Jun 15th, 2009, 02:14 PM
Spanish has already become near essential in the US.

But I doubt that anything will be able usurp English as the lingua franca for many generations to come.

Freakan
Jun 15th, 2009, 02:47 PM
And even more people speak Chinese...
You just shouldn't spend so much time looking for naked Latino guys;)

Barrie_Dude
Jun 15th, 2009, 02:52 PM
And even more people speak Chinese...
You just shouldn't spend so much time looking for naked Latino guys;)
He just wants to be able to say "Hot Naked Guys, Please!" in any language! :lol:

Just Do It
Jun 15th, 2009, 04:24 PM
And even more people speak Chinese...
You just shouldn't spend so much time looking for naked Latino guys;)

:spit:

New_balls_please
Jun 15th, 2009, 07:32 PM
Spanish has already become near essential in the US.

But I doubt that anything will be able usurp English as the lingua franca for many generations to come.

Lol @ your signature :spit: :lol:

Mi madre está bailando en el techo doesn't make any sense but it's so funny! :lol:
My mother's dancing on the roof :spit: :haha:

Albireo
Jun 15th, 2009, 08:37 PM
And even more people speak Chinese...
You just shouldn't spend so much time looking for naked Latino guys;)

:spit::spit::haha:

Albireo
Jun 15th, 2009, 08:45 PM
When I started using internet back in 2002 every website was in English. Lately Spanish language is everywhere and I find it hard to use internet and communicate with people on certain blogs and sites. I am thinking of learning Spanish now, at least some useful words and phrases.

English language : Total speakers First language : 309–400 million
Spanish language : Total speakers First language : 350 million

Will learning Spanish be a must in the future ?

No. English is still the world's most dominant language, and will remain so as as technology brings more and more English-language entertainment into rural parts of the world. The rise of Spanish-language Internet sites is due in part to the spread of the technology, and in part due to Spanish-speaking peoples asserting their linguistic heritage. Good for them.

As far as learning the language, it can only be of benefit--the more languages one knows, the better.

Re: Spanish in the US: it generally takes 2-3 generations before immigrant families become first-language speakers in their new countries. Spanish speakers in the US are assimilating at the expected rate, language-wise, no matter what the conservatard commentators will tell you.

Willam
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:01 AM
Lol @ your signature :spit: :lol:

Mi madre está bailando en el techo doesn't make any sense but it's so funny! :lol:
My mother's dancing on the roof :spit: :haha:

how come it dosn't make any sence?

it's a lyric and it's well written and it does means something :shrug:

Harvs
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:06 AM
lol no.

Danči Dementia
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:11 AM
Spanish rules :rocker2:

it will never be the world´s dominat langauge but it is certianly one of the most important languages and will be for a long time and not to mention that Spanish is so so beautiful :hearts:

Danči Dementia
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:13 AM
how come it dosn't make any sence?

it's a lyric and it's well written and it does means something :shrug:

that mother is on crack:p:lol:


bromeo, bromeo ;)

New_balls_please
Jun 16th, 2009, 12:16 PM
how come it dosn't make any sence?

it's a lyric and it's well written and it does means something :shrug:

It only make sense if it comes from a song. I can't imagine my mother dancing on a roof :lol:
Anyway, it's well written :D Perfect spanish ;)

Dandy_Warhol
Jun 16th, 2009, 01:55 PM
And even more people speak Chinese...
You just shouldn't spend so much time looking for naked Latino guys;)

:spit:

propi
Jun 16th, 2009, 03:23 PM
Well, taking over the world might be a bit too much; it's true that, at least in some places, studying Spanish has become a trend and youngs seem to like to learn it.
It's compulsory if you want to be able to communicate in almost all America :)
Now Instituto Cervantes are encouraging the Spanish in countries like Brazil or The Philippines I hope it helps to spread it a bit more. Next step... ladino I hope, it must be really interesting :bounce:

Scotso
Jun 16th, 2009, 03:38 PM
List of languages by total speakers:

1) English - 1800 million
....
6) Spanish - 450 million

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_languages_by_number_of_speakers


I think English is safe. But if you frequent Spanish websites and talk to Spanish speakers, by all means, learn the language. It couldn't possibly hurt and could open you up to more professional opportunities.

For the most part, I've found that most native Spanish speakers that I encounter on the internet speak at least a decent amount of English. Granted, I don't go to any Spanish-based websites and I'm not a big fan of soccer. :p

Expat
Jun 16th, 2009, 03:53 PM
Chinese and Arabic are far more likely to take over the world.
Just because a majority of immigrants into the States speak Spanish doesn't mean that Spanish is taking over the world. For Spanish to take over Spanish speaking economies need to do really well.

woosey
Jun 16th, 2009, 05:37 PM
well, what does it mean to take over the world?

to me, it has nothing to do with the sheer size of a population.

spanish is not going to take over the world any time soon, at least in the way english has.

here's why, from my amateur linguist pov.

spanish is simply irrelevant when it comes to technological and scientific advancements, mass cultural dissemination, and commerce.

when you look at all the technological and scientific breakthroughs or highs in commerce, let's say of the last 100 years many of them stem from the u.s.

what breakthroughs are coming from latin america or spain? what major companies in those regions are dominating? answer: hardly any, comparatively speaking. and i don't mean that in a mean way either.

i was once listening to a podcast where they were talking about science and arabic. they were talking about how you have to learn some medicine and advanced science in english because without that exploration the language can't evolve to embrace/create new words. so, arabic will not be a dominant language, let's say in the sciences, until it becomes infused with innovation stemming from the practices of its people who, right now, are not so free to engage in this type of intellectual activity.

now look at the us - english is a dominant language not because of the brits, but because of the u.s. and all the technological/scientific/financial achievements and cultural popularity of the country.

use the world of computers as an example:

take the word INTERNET. invented by the u.s. btw...
take the word IPOD.
or software, hardware, firmware, blog, podcast...

anyway...

sloppy way of saying that spanish is not taking over the world.

Just Do It
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:46 PM
Chinese and Arabic are far more likely to take over the world.
Just because a majority of immigrants into the States speak Spanish doesn't mean that Spanish is taking over the world. For Spanish to take over Spanish speaking economies need to do really well.

I highly doubt people will even try to learn those languages. I'd go with Chinese and Arabs learning Western languages.

Johno_uk
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:52 PM
well, what does it mean to take over the world?

to me, it has nothing to do with the sheer size of a population.

spanish is not going to take over the world any time soon, at least in the way english has.

here's why, from my amateur linguist pov.

spanish is simply irrelevant when it comes to technological and scientific advancements, mass cultural dissemination, and commerce.

when you look at all the technological and scientific breakthroughs or highs in commerce, let's say of the last 100 years many of them stem from the u.s.

what breakthroughs are coming from latin america or spain? what major companies in those regions are dominating? answer: hardly any, comparatively speaking. and i don't mean that in a mean way either.

i was once listening to a podcast where they were talking about science and arabic. they were talking about how you have to learn some medicine and advanced science in english because without that exploration the language can't evolve to embrace/create new words. so, arabic will not be a dominant language, let's say in the sciences, until it becomes infused with innovation stemming from the practices of its people who, right now, are not so free to engage in this type of intellectual activity.

now look at the us - english is a dominant language not because of the brits, but because of the u.s. and all the technological/scientific/financial achievements and cultural popularity of the country.

use the world of computers as an example:

take the word INTERNET. invented by the u.s. btw...
take the word IPOD.
or software, hardware, firmware, blog, podcast...

anyway...

sloppy way of saying that spanish is not taking over the world.

Don't quite agree; English is the dominant language because two consecutive global superpowers have used the same language (Britain then US). The US did not spread the language to the caribbean, Africa, Australia or to Asia (apart from Phillipines). One of the reasons for the success of English is because it is the only language which has a large number of speakers in every continent, and only other language than can sort of claim this (but to a much lesser extent) is French. So Britain started the momentum, which America then continued as the next superpower to create a global language. Also don't underestimate the 'technological/scientific/financial achievements and cultural popularity' of the UK ;) London at least rivals NY as the financial capital of the world, and the influence of British media/ culture is a fairly big factor in influencing the learning of english in other northern european countries.

Also interestingly, if you look at the G8 of major world economies: France, United States, United Kingdom, Russia, Germany, Japan, Italy, and Canada. There are three countries where English is the dominant language, and spanish is not even represented. Although if you widen this out to the G20 there are then three spanish speaking countries (Argentina, Mexcio, Spain) and six countries where English is the dominant language (either by mother tongue speakers or economically) sense: Australia, Canada, India, South Africa, UK and USA. In short Spanish isn't powerful enough to take over.

Expat
Jun 16th, 2009, 06:56 PM
I highly doubt people will even try to learn those languages. I'd go with Chinese and Arabs learning Western languages.

Chinese economic power and Arab demographics. Staying in Europe I am surprised you question that Arabic will not be the dominant language of Europe. And Chinese will be increasingly popular for the same reason that other people learned English. To get jobs. Thats not to say that English will be replaced any time soon but its not going to be replaced by Spanish till we see a Latin American economic boom or something like that.

Johno_uk
Jun 16th, 2009, 07:05 PM
Chinese economic power and Arab demographics. Staying in Europe I am surprised you question that Arabic will not be the dominant language of Europe. And Chinese will be increasingly popular for the same reason that other people learned English. To get jobs. Thats not to say that English will be replaced any time soon but its not going to be replaced by Spanish till we see a Latin American economic boom or something like that.

Arabic is not a major language in Europe at all!

In the UK for instance it's just one of many immigrant languages, and not even one of the biggest ones. In Germany, the biggest immigrant language is Turkish. Do be honest in the UK immigrants assimilate to english VERY quickly, the majority of British Asians I know have either no or very limited knowledge of the language their parents/ grandparents spoke. Getting by in a language other than English in the UK is practically impossible, compared with the amount of services spanish speakers get in the US. Only countries in Europe I can think of with significant Arab speaking population are France, and maybe Spain. But no-one is learning Arabic as a foreign language here.

Expat
Jun 16th, 2009, 07:32 PM
Arabic is not a major language in Europe at all!

In the UK for instance it's just one of many immigrant languages, and not even one of the biggest ones. In Germany, the biggest immigrant language is Turkish. Do be honest in the UK immigrants assimilate to english VERY quickly, the majority of British Asians I know have either no or very limited knowledge of the language their parents/ grandparents spoke. Getting by in a language other than English in the UK is practically impossible, compared with the amount of services spanish speakers get in the US. Only countries in Europe I can think of with significant Arab speaking population are France, and maybe Spain. But no-one is learning Arabic as a foreign language here.
Also Italy . But you are also forgetting petromoney as a reason to learn Arabic. But if you think Spanish is spreading in the States just because of demographics then Europe is much more likely to be speaking Arabic thanks to its low birth rate. Its like what 1.something for most European countries. Below even replacement level.

Adal
Jun 16th, 2009, 07:33 PM
Please edit the thread title

propi
Jun 16th, 2009, 08:04 PM
Also Italy . But you are also forgetting petromoney as a reason to learn Arabic. But if you think Spanish is spreading in the States just because of demographics then Europe is much more likely to be speaking Arabic thanks to its low birth rate. Its like what 1.something for most European countries. Below even replacement level.
Learning Spanish being English speaker is way easier than learning Arabic being Spanish or French speaker, starting by the fact you have to learn a new alphabet, writing style et al. ;)

Bayo
Jun 16th, 2009, 08:17 PM
Lol @ your signature :spit: :lol:

Mi madre está bailando en el techo doesn't make any sense but it's so funny! :lol:
My mother's dancing on the roof :spit: :haha:

Como la mayoría de hombres gay, Arenas tenía una relación muy interesante con su madre. ;)

His mother featured prominently in all of his writings, but particularly in Celestino antes del alba, the first novel in his Pentagonia series, from which I've borrowed my signature.

In English the novel was titled Singing from the Well, in reference to the opening lines: "Mi madre acaba de salir corriendo de la casa. Y como una loca iba gritando que se tiraría al pozo." Years later, the Spanish publisher also changed the title to Cantando en el pozo.

And that completes literatura cubana for today. :lol:

Albireo
Jun 16th, 2009, 08:31 PM
Learning Spanish being English speaker is way easier than learning Arabic being Spanish or French speaker, starting by the fact you have to learn a new alphabet, writing style et al. ;)

That assumes, though, that you want to learn to read/write, neither of which has to do with speaking (which I assume the OP is referring to).

The primary difficulty for English speakers learning Arabic is the grammar, with the pharyngealized consonants being a distant second. The Semitic languages have any number of syntactic and grammatical quirks and constructs that make them seem more difficult to English speakers than do most Indo-European languages, and so they seem harder to learn. In reality, that isn't always the case. In any event, knowing multiple languages of any family(s) will help one greatly when learning any language, no matter its difficulty.

Some good discussion in this thread. :)

/linguist
//professional
///and cunning

Expat
Jun 16th, 2009, 08:35 PM
Learning Spanish being English speaker is way easier than learning Arabic being Spanish or French speaker, starting by the fact you have to learn a new alphabet, writing style et al. ;)

It is tougher but the same goes for Arabic people learning Indo European languages. If they can learn then when Europeans are in a minority they will have to learn Arabic too. I mean will it be better for Arab speaking people in Denmark and Italy to be speaking Arabic or Danish/Italian when they are in a majority and it is accepted in more countries than either Danish or Italian. English or French are still more useful outside and will continue to be used for a long time.

doni1212
Jun 16th, 2009, 09:23 PM
I hope it is since that is one of my two majors, :lol:

Lin Lin
Jun 17th, 2009, 01:03 AM
Chinese language is too hard for westerners to study,I once taught one of my British colleagues how to pronounce "1,2,3,4" in Chinese, she struggled nearly one week,and she gave it up when I taughe her 5.

All she can say,already in China for one year, is only "Ni Hao","Wei","Xie Xie" and "Pi Jiu",which respectively means Hi,Hello,Thank you and Beer:scared:

Sam L
Jun 17th, 2009, 11:42 AM
Chinese language is too hard for westerners to study,I once taught one of my British colleagues how to pronounce "1,2,3,4" in Chinese, she struggled nearly one week,and she gave it up when I taughe her 5.

All she can say,already in China for one year, is only "Ni Hao","Wei","Xie Xie" and "Pi Jiu",which respectively means Hi,Hello,Thank you and Beer:scared:

Exactly! Anyone who thinks that Chinese or Arabic languages will dominate in the future is seriously overrating the ability of the vast majority of the world to learn languages.

There's a reason why English dominates. IT'S EASY. It's easy means more people can learn, more people can use and more people can teach. It's a steamroll effect.

Spanish is also easy. It's possible given the right economics and demographics that Spanish will become more dominant in the future.

Chinese and Arabic - no way.

Here's a website that tells you the relative difficulty of learning new languages with regard to phonemes, syntax, vocabulary, orthograph etc... It's not the be all and end all but it does give you an idea on how difficult some languages are compared to others. http://www.micheloud.com/FXM/LA/LA/

azdaja
Jun 17th, 2009, 01:23 PM
the only really difficult thing about chinese is the writing system. pronounciation is complicated, but if people give you the right hints you will master it and then you have brilliantly simple synthax. i can pronounce chinese correctly and say some basic stuff like introduce myself and similar, but i am out of practice when it gets to listening it. well, i had learned it only for a year after all.

arabic script on the other hand is simple and can be learned in a short time even though you will need some practice before you can read it. it's easy to read once you gain some fluency in arabic. pronounciation is not really that difficult if you accept that you will speak with an accent, which most people do when they speak a foreign language anyway. english pronounciation is not any easier, for example.

people should not be afraid of other writing systems. some of them are really simple.

as for spanish, it has regional importance and it is an official language of the united nations, it is also a very popular forign language to learn, but it's not going to become more important globally until some spanish-speaking country becomes a global power economically. come on, mexico, do it for your language :armed:

Here's a website that tells you the relative difficulty of learning new languages with regard to phonemes, syntax, vocabulary, orthograph etc... It's not the be all and end all but it does give you an idea on how difficult some languages are compared to others. http://www.micheloud.com/FXM/LA/LA/
that website is silly. you need to take into account what your first language is. in the review of english phonology "th" sounds are presented as impossible to learn which is complete nonsense. at the same time the really difficult thing about english phonology - its unusual vowel system - is ignored.

the review of finnish is funny, though. it's useless, it's not chic, it's difficult :lol: and i'm learning it nevertheless.

i do not think that a language being difficult is an obstacle for it to become a lingua franca. if it gains in prestige people will want to learn it no matter what.

gentenaire
Jun 17th, 2009, 03:22 PM
I see absolutely no sign of that.
English has taken over the world in far more ways than just the number of people who speak the language. It influences other languages. I think the majority of new Dutch words these days are originally English words (usually words for new technology, internet terminology, etc.).

!Gio!
Jun 18th, 2009, 03:11 AM
ojala, el Castellano es muy importante hoy en dia en todo el mundo hasta Catalunya y su Catala ufffff;)Sin commentarios!!!

Expat
Jun 18th, 2009, 03:28 AM
ojala, el Castellano es muy importante hoy en dia en todo el mundo hasta Catalunya y su Catala ufffff;)Sin commentarios!!!

Catalan is easy especially if you speak Northern Italian but totally useless outside of Barcelona/Valencia. And even if you dont know Catalan you can get by in Barcelona pretty easily. I have totally forgotten how to understand it. Never could speak it properly but I used to understand and read it very well.

Scotso
Jun 18th, 2009, 03:41 AM
English has taken over the world in far more ways than just the number of people who speak the language. It influences other languages. I think the majority of new Dutch words these days are originally English words (usually words for new technology, internet terminology, etc.).

Our culture is superiorrrrrrr! All your base are belong to us! :devil:

Lin Lin
Jun 18th, 2009, 03:44 AM
Our culture is superiorrrrrrr! All your base are belong to us! :devil:

Language is only a small part of "culture";)Good to see you are so confident:)

Abby Rose
Jun 18th, 2009, 05:04 AM
I think that Spanish has indeed become more common, especially here in the States. I guess immigrants are becoming comfortable using their native tongue rather than learning the English language. There's nothing wrong with it. I'm always a firm believer in diversity. It's what makes the US great!

treufreund
Jun 18th, 2009, 07:05 AM
Catalan is easy especially if you speak Northern Italian but totally useless outside of Barcelona/Valencia. And even if you dont know Catalan you can get by in Barcelona pretty easily. I have to
tally forgotten how to understand it. Never could speak it properly but I used to understand and read it very well.

Hmmm, well, "Catalan" in ENGLISH is "Catalonian"... "Castellano" in ENGLISH is "Castilian." Given that, I think you misunderstood what the poster you quoted was saying. He/she was not referring to Catalonian spoken in Barcelona and Valencia but Castilian Spanish which is spoken in Latin America (other than Brazil and a few other countries where the native tongue is Portuguese, French, Dutch or English) and Spain.

Also, another poster wrote that Spanish is beautiful. I would just like to say that to SOME PEOPLE it is beautiful. I don't find Spanish unattractive really, but not beautiful at all either. I prefer Russian, German, Hebrew and Polish. :)

zvonarevarulz
Jun 18th, 2009, 07:14 AM
I hope not:unsure:
I really dont want to brush up on my spanish:lol:

Sam L
Jun 18th, 2009, 08:12 AM
the only really difficult thing about chinese is the writing system. pronounciation is complicated, but if people give you the right hints you will master it and then you have brilliantly simple synthax. i can pronounce chinese correctly and say some basic stuff like introduce myself and similar, but i am out of practice when it gets to listening it. well, i had learned it only for a year after all.

arabic script on the other hand is simple and can be learned in a short time even though you will need some practice before you can read it. it's easy to read once you gain some fluency in arabic. pronounciation is not really that difficult if you accept that you will speak with an accent, which most people do when they speak a foreign language anyway. english pronounciation is not any easier, for example.

people should not be afraid of other writing systems. some of them are really simple.

as for spanish, it has regional importance and it is an official language of the united nations, it is also a very popular forign language to learn, but it's not going to become more important globally until some spanish-speaking country becomes a global power economically. come on, mexico, do it for your language :armed:


that website is silly. you need to take into account what your first language is. in the review of english phonology "th" sounds are presented as impossible to learn which is complete nonsense. at the same time the really difficult thing about english phonology - its unusual vowel system - is ignored.

the review of finnish is funny, though. it's useless, it's not chic, it's difficult :lol: and i'm learning it nevertheless.

i do not think that a language being difficult is an obstacle for it to become a lingua franca. if it gains in prestige people will want to learn it no matter what.


Obviously just talking about it is "easy" and learning the basics is "easy". To perfect a language is a whole other fish. Knowing basic things is hardly knowing a language at all. I understand how Arabic and Chinese languages work too and know basic things. Doesn't know I know them.

English is easier in that it's easier to perfect. It's easier (takes less time and effort) to reach that level where you can call yourself a fluent speaker. Of course, if you put in the time and effort all languages can be learned quite efficiently.

azdaja
Jun 18th, 2009, 09:35 AM
Obviously just talking about it is "easy" and learning the basics is "easy". To perfect a language is a whole other fish. Knowing basic things is hardly knowing a language at all. I understand how Arabic and Chinese languages work too and know basic things. Doesn't know I know them.

English is easier in that it's easier to perfect. It's easier (takes less time and effort) to reach that level where you can call yourself a fluent speaker. Of course, if you put in the time and effort all languages can be learned quite efficiently.
i am talking about becoming fluent in a language and i still mean what i said - chinese is not as difficult as some people think. incidently, i have friends who are fluent in mandarin and i have a friend who is semi-fluent in arabic. they all learned them as foreign languages, they all have german as their first language and nobody thinks they achieved something spectacular. the only reason i gave up on mandarin and the reason why my friend who speaks arabic is only semi-fluent is lack of possibilities to use the language. that is the main reason why it's easier to learn english than other languages. we are surrounded by english in the media, in pop culture, at work... it's far more difficult with other languages, especially with non-european ones. but if you are keen on learning a language and find a way to use it you will be able to learn it.

because of my interest in linguistics i am keen on learning a language from outside of indo-european family and my first choices would be mandarin, arabic and finnish. i picked finnish because i have friends there and at least from time to time i will be able to use it. but an average person will have no incentive to learn something that you don't really need. that is a far more important obstacle than anything else.

Sam L
Jun 18th, 2009, 10:00 AM
i am talking about becoming fluent in a language and i still mean what i said - chinese is not as difficult as some people think. incidently, i have friends who are fluent in mandarin and i have a friend who is semi-fluent in arabic. they all learned them as foreign languages, they all have german as their first language and nobody thinks they achieved something spectacular. the only reason i gave up on mandarin and the reason why my friend who speaks arabic is only semi-fluent is lack of possibilities to use the language. that is the main reason why it's easier to learn english than other languages. we are surrounded by english in the media, in pop culture, at work... it's far more difficult with other languages, especially with non-european ones. but if you are keen on learning a language and find a way to use it you will be able to learn it.

because of my interest in linguistics i am keen on learning a language from outside of indo-european family and my first choices would be mandarin, arabic and finnish. i picked finnish because i have friends there and at least from time to time i will be able to use it. but an average person will have no incentive to learn something that you don't really need. that is a far more important obstacle than anything else.


Well, yes. Like I said it's a steamroll effect. It's about whether you need it but also about ability of the general population. Like you said you're studying linguistics, you're not average in this area. Not evereyone's going to think Chinese is "easy". :lol:

But I'm also standing by my own position that Arabic and Chinese will never become lingua franca. Another reason why they're so difficult that I didn't mention is that they're both diglossic.

I mean let's say Arabic becomes dominant? Which Arabic? Won't the Modern Standard Arabic - the one they use on the news. Egyptian Arabic? The colloquial with the most speakers? They can't even get all Arabic speakers to speak that!

The same with Chinese. The writing may be uniform but the spoken form isn't. I have many Cantonese speaking friends who are learning Mandarin and they're struggling! They've already got the written part down.

I mean you just don't have that with Queen's English and street English aside from vocabulary.

It's admirable that you're learning languages outside of the Indo-European family. Good luck! My mother tongue isn't Indo-European but I'm learning a whole group of Indo-European languages for interest, religious reasons for Indian languages. I think I'll be fine with mastering the grammar and linguistics of those and studying within the Indo-European family. I mean there's already diversity and a lot of research - more than any other language group - within it.